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$8 Billion of Personal Loans Push Cambodia to Brink of Crisis

  • Millions are now at risk of losing their homes due to debt
  • Country’s outstanding loan average now highest in the world
Microfinance Runs Amok in Cambodia Where 'Everybody Has a Loan'
Photographer: Taylor Weidman/Bloomberg

Skyrocketing micro-finance debt in Cambodia has left millions of people at risk of losing their homes, leading to fears of a potential political and economic crisis.

With a median of $3,370 per loan, Cambodia now has the highest average for small loans in the world, according to a report from the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights and Samakum Teang Tnaut on Wednesday. Altogether, nearly 15% of the population held at least $8 billion in micro loan debt at the start of the year, the data show.